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What’s in the air at home? Scientists reveal a whole new world of chemistry by stepping indoors.

Colorado State University atmospheric chemist Delphine Farmer had spent her entire career probing the complexities of outdoor air – how gases and particles in the atmosphere move, interact and change, and how human activities perturb the air we breathe.

Date Published: February 6, 2020

Publication: CSU College of Natural Sciences News

Author: Anne Manning

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52 Ways to Detox Your Home and Live Healthier This Year

In June 2018, researchers from nine universities converged on one 1,200-square-foot manufactured home in Austin, Texas. They cooked and cleaned—not for their health, but for yours, as part of the HOMEChem (House Observations of Microbial and Environmental Chemistry) experiment, which aims to find out how everyday activities affect the quality of the air your family breathes. In particular, they looked at oxidants; volatile organic compounds, or VOCs; and particulate matter, all of which may have negative impacts on human systems. They’re still analyzing the data, but in the meantime, we caught up with Marina Vance, an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Colorado Boulder who participated in the study, to chat about what she’s learned—and what it means for you.

Date Published: January 29, 2020

Publication: 5280 Magazine

Author: Daliah Singer

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Indoor chemical pollution impacts often remain invisible

Furniture, flooring, construction materials, and humans and their habits are just some sources of the thousands of particles and gases that surround people living indoors. As scientists collect increasingly sophisticated data on the chemistry of the indoor environment, policy-makers and industry leaders are seeking more information on how to apply these findings to buildings and homes, experts said at an American Association for the Advancement of Science symposium.

Date Published: November 30, 2019

Publication: Science

Author: Becky Ham

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How About Some Air Pollution With That Thanksgiving Meal?

For many in the USA, this week’s Thanksgiving will be a time of coming together as a family – eating great food, cooking and cleaning – and, very possibly being exposed to unhealthy air at home.

Date Published: November 27, 2019

Publication: BreezoBuzz

Author: Amalia Helen

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Chemists move indoors to measure the air quality in our homes

Atmospheric chemists have spent decades upon decades focused on understanding the quality of outdoor air. But given the lopsided ratio of time humans spend indoors versus outdoors, some of these researchers are shifting their attention. They want to use the tools they’ve developed for monitoring outdoor air and start making the same sorts of measurements inside.

Date Published: November 24, 2019

Publication: C&EN

Author: Celia Henry Arnaud

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Sloan Foundation 2018 Annual Report

“Preliminary data suggest that the chemistry of indoor air is every bit as complex and dynamic as outdoor air, that it can change radically in short timeframes, that it can be much dirtier than we previously expected, and that human activities are major players in the indoor chemistry of a home.”

Date Published: November 1, 2019

Author: The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

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Take a deep breath? Investigating indoor air pollution

New studies are uncovering how emissions from daily household activities pollute the air we breathe at home.

Ages: 11-14, 14-16, 16-19

Date Published: October 25, 2019

Publication: Science in School: The European journal for science teachers

Author: Nicola Carslaw, Nina Notman

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Cleaning with bleach could create indoor air pollutants

Bleach cleaning products emit chlorine-containing compounds, such as hypochlorous acid (HOCl) and chlorine gas (Cl2), that can accumulate to relatively high levels in poorly ventilated indoor environments.

Date Published: October 2, 2019

Publication: EurekAlert!

Author: AMERICAN CHEMICAL SOCIETY

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Mixing bleach and citrus cleaners may be harmful to you and your pets

By themselves, limonenes aren’t toxic. But when they come into contact with light or air, they can oxidize and become irritating to eyes and skin… Researchers from the University of Toronto and Bucknell University in Pennsylvania decided to see what might happen when limonene and bleach fumes, at concentrations likely to occur in indoor environments, were combined.

Date Published: October 2, 2019

Publication: CNN

Author: Sandee LaMotte

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